Over half of UK workers have reported worrying about money on a weekly basis, with women and young people among those most likely to have increased financial anxiety.
According to new research from financial wellbeing platform, nudge, poor financial literacy is causing rising debt and money worries as three quarters of British workers don’t feel completely confident about their money management skills.
The data shows four in 10 brits who lack money management skills are in more debt now than they were six months ago, and over half (53%) of them are more anxious about money than they were six months ago.
More than one in five 16-24 year-olds admitted to either having no idea how to manage their money or had an idea but often got it wrong.
These figures show a concerning future ahead for those without competent money management skills as the UK heads into recession due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Poor financial literacy is a ticking time bomb which will only exacerbate the problems people are facing right now – whether that’s related to health, relationships or mental wellbeing,” said co-founder of nudge, Tim Perkins.
“A really worrying number of people don’t feel confident in their skills and knowledge when it comes to managing their money. This knowledge is especially critical in tougher times.”
More than a quarter of young people said they feel pressure to continuously save money, and one in five said they feel social pressure to spend beyond their means.
According to a Manchester University study, there was a 33% increase in clinically significant levels of psychological distress in women and a 37% increase in young people in April compared to before the pandemic.
A recent TUC poll found that two in five working mothers with children under the age of 10 cannot get, or are unsure whether they can get, adequate childcare to enable them go back to work this month, causing concern about the longer-term effects of the coronavirus pandemic on women and their employment prospects.
Susanne Jacobs, founder of workplace wellness organisation, The Seven, said: “Having the right skills and knowledge to manage our money grants us a sense of agency and allows us greater autonomy in how we live our lives.
“Without these, we can be trapped by our circumstances with little ability to carve out our chosen path – and this depletes our energy, motivation and performance, to the detriment of every aspect of our lives.”